I have great hopes for a new book by Paul MacPhail called ‘Hank Williams: From the Cradle to the Grave’.
A note from Paul says the book is 81/2 by 11 with a glossy cover, and chapters organized year by year and pages day by day. Paul says the book will cover:
Everything ever written on Hank and then some. Every known tour date, world tour, all radio and tv appearances, recording sessions and personnel, cars, homes, band members, health problems, personal problems, singles, albums, box sets, chart positions, sales figures.
I’ve been looking forward to a book like this. Many of Hank’s biographers have given the impression that his life was one of total irresponsibility, debauchery, drunken binges, missed shows, a tragic genius whose accomplishments seemed almost magic or mysterious.
Not true of course.
Hank Williams did have a very serious health problems which would be debilitating even with the modern medicine of this century, and he underwent just about the most serious, dangerous open back surgery you can undergo even today in 2011.
Of course he had very serious problems with alcohol and painkillers.
But how many original songs did he write, how many songs had he learned, how many recordings did he make, how many radio shows did he broadcast, how many live shows did he give, how many miles did he travel? Just another lazy drunk I guess.
I have written a couple of posts referring to Hank’s back surgery which I hope you will go back and read.
I haven’t seen MacPhail’s book, but I am so hopeful his use of a wide range of sources, and the day by day format, will tell us more about Hank’s life especially in the short period after 1946.
The book has to be ordered from Paul at:
34 Mt. Herbert Rd.
Canada C1B 2S4
There are copies at the Hank Williams’ museum in Montgomery.